“I am no bird; and no net ensnares me: I am a free human being with an independent will.”
Charlotte Brontë, Jane Eyre
Spotify is now allowing creators to package podcasts with music “in one harmonious listening experience”. Listeners can additionally interact with the featured music as they normally would, by liking, saving, and getting more information about a track without leaving the show page or searching for the song manually.
IFPI and WIN’s new global repertoire data exchange service (RDx) is now “fully operational,” providing a supply chain for performance rights data among record companies and music licensing companies. This will help improve the timeliness, accuracy, and efficiency of revenue distribution to rights holders when their music is used.
Snapchat launched a new feature called Sounds on Thursday, letting iOS-only app users add song clips to their Snaps and Stories, share them with friends, and save the link to download the full song. The company is also exploring the ability for Snapchatters to create their own sounds and add them to Snaps, which they say will roll out globally on the app in the coming months.
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In this newsletter:
- Spotify Now Allowing Creators to Package Podcasts with Music (Further Licensing Not Required)
- IFPI and WIN’s New Data Exchange Service RDx Now “Fully Operational”
- Snapchat Now Lets You Add Songs to Posts, Launches with Preview of New Justin Bieber, Benny Blanco Track
- The MLC Announces Chief Financial Officer and Head of International Relations
- Triller in Merger Talks to go Public in the US (Report)
- TikTok Inks Multi-Year Licensing Deal with Dutch Collecting Society Buma/Stemra
Now, the details...
Compiled by Heidi Seo
Exploration Weekly - October 16, 2020
Spotify Now Allowing Creators to Package Podcasts with Music (Further Licensing Not Required)
This week, Spotify is allowing artists and creators to produce shows that merge talk segments with complete, unedited tracks “in one harmonious listening experience.” Listeners can interact with the featured music as they normally would, by liking, saving and getting more information about a track without leaving the show page or searching for the song manually. The vehicle driving the new format is Anchor, the podcast creation and distribution company Spotify acquired in February 2019 in what was an early indication of the company’s aggressive push into the podcasting space. Anchor users in the US, UK, Canada, Australia, New Zealand, and Ireland can now create a show in the format, which Spotify is billing not as a podcast, but rather “an evolution of mixed-media playlists like Your Daily Drive,” which combines music with news updates.
IFPI and WIN’s New Data Exchange Service RDx Now “Fully Operational”
IFPI and WIN have announced that their global repertoire data exchange service (RDx), built and run for Repertoire Data Exchange Limited by PPL, is now “fully operational”. RDx provides a supply chain for performance rights data among record companies and music licensing companies (MLCs) to help improve the accuracy of revenue distribution to rights holders when their music is used. It simplifies the data-handling process by offering recording rights holders, of all sizes and from any country, a single registration point to supply their repertoire data in a standardized format (DDEX RDR) that can be quickly and easily accessed by participating MLCs. This is expected to improve the timeliness, accuracy, and efficiency of MLCs’ revenue distributions to rights holders worldwide and provide mechanisms for increasing data quality and automatically alerting rights holders when potential rights conflicts are detected.
Snapchat Now Lets You Add Songs to Posts, Launches with Preview of New Justin Bieber, Benny Blanco Track
Snapchat launched a new feature called Sounds yesterday, which lets app users add song clips to their Snaps and Stories. Currently, though, it’s available only in the app for Apple’s iOS. The new music feature will launch with an exclusive preview of Justin Bieber and Benny Blanco’s new song “Lonely,” which will be featured exclusively in Snapchat’s Featured Sounds list, letting users create Snaps with the new ballad, share them with friends, and save the link to download the full song when it’s available. Snap now has multi-year agreements with major and independent music publishers and labels, including Warner Music Group, Merlin, NMPA, Universal Music Publishing Group, Warner Chappell Music, Kobalt, and BMG. Notably missing from Snapchat Sounds for now is Sony Music Entertainment. The company is also testing the ability for Snapchatters to create their own sounds and add them to Snaps, which they say will roll out globally on the app in the coming months.
The MLC Announces Chief Financial Officer and Head of International Relations
The Mechanical Licensing Collective (The MLC) announced on Wednesday that it had filled two more roles on its senior leadership team: Ilene Weintraub as The MLC’s Chief Financial Officer and Indi Chawla as The MLC’s Head of International Relations. As CFO, Ilene Weintraub will be responsible for all of The MLC’s financial activities, including accounting, finance, treasury, cash management, and royalty reporting to Members. She will also serve as a strategic advisor to The MLC’s CEO and leadership team on financial and business matters. Indi Chawla, The MLC’s new Head of International Relations, will be responsible for leading The MLC’s outreach and engagement with collective management and other industry organizations outside the US.
Triller in Merger Talks to go Public in the US (Report)
According to a report published by Reuters on Sunday, sources are saying that the Los Angeles-based TikTok rival Triller is in the middle of negotiations with what are described as “blank-check acquisition companies” about a possible merger in order to go public in the US. The investment bank Farvahar Partners is involved in the talks as they will negotiate a potential deal with so-called special purpose acquisition companies (SPAC). Reuters sources warned, however, that “no deal is certain”. In July, Triller was raising between $200 million and $300 million to fuel its expansion, having hit 50 million monthly active users around the world in June. The company reports to have had more than 250 million downloads, with celebrities like Alicia Keys, Cardi B, Marshmello, Roddy Ricch, and Eminem using the app.
TikTok Inks Multi-Year Licensing Deal with Dutch Collecting Society Buma/Stemra
TikTok has signed a multi-year deal with Dutch collecting society Buma/Stemra, securing royalty payments for the songwriters, composers, and publishers represented by the organization. The agreement follows last month’s news of TikTok’s 100 million monthly active user milestone in Europe in addition to a similar number in the US. The company’s press statement further added that TikTok will work with Buma/Stemra’s members to deepen their “understanding of the platform and the opportunities it presents to those creating and also performing music”. Buma/Stemra’s members include Dutch EDM stars and TikTok users such as Fedde Le Grand and Tiësto, as well as Martin Garrix.
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